Autumn is here, kids are going back to school, and we are all ready for better behavior from our dogs. This September, we’re offering two 6-week classes in Orange to help your dog with all the basics — sit, down, stay, polite greetings, mannerly leash walking, and more! Your dog will get started on the three Rs: Recall (come when called), Recline (settle when asked), and Recognize Your Name (pay attention) — among other things.
To get you in a “back to school” mode, we’ve included some great RECALL (come when called) tips for training your dog. See the purple tips at the bottom of the post.
What makes At Your Service classes unique?
- Convenient: Serving the North Quabbin region — located off of Route 2 in Orange, at the Orange Innovation Center in a very spacious first-floor room with its own entrance
- Positive: Taught with marker-based, positive reinforcement — learn to get great behavior from your dog without force or pain!
- Helpful: Taught with fun, humor, and positivity for people, too! Using TAGteaching, games, and always responsive to our students’ feedback, we try to make class a good experience for ALL participants
- Informative: Once you enroll, you get lifetime access to our Client Portal and a library of over 70 training handouts, homework sheets, and helpful tips
- Affordable: A six-week class is only $128, a significant savings on in-home training and more bang for your buck than shorter classes that cost more
Which class is right for your dog?
There are two classes being offered right now: Family Dog Manners & Obedience, and Service Dog Foundations. Find out the details below.
Family Dog Manners & Obedience
- Meets Saturdays at 11:30 AM
- Begins September 17
- Your dog learns Sit, Down (lay down), Come, Let’s Go! (polite leash walking), Touch (nose targeting), Settle (relax on a mat), Leave It, polite greetings, and more!
- Register your dog for Family Dog Manners (4 spaces left)
- More details about our classes
Family Dog Manners & Obedience is ideal for…
- Newly adopted dogs
- Family pets that could use better manners
- Adolescent dogs (5 months to 2 years) that have forgotten how to behave with the onset of “youth”
- Dogs that respond to cues (sit, down, stay, come, etc.) at home but not when distracted
- Future service dogs taking their first class
What do our past students say about Family Dog Manners & Obedience?
I’m so happy with all we are learning.
It’s a great class! We are loving it.
A great class I have learned a lot
Service Dog Foundations
- Meets Saturdays at 10 AM
- Begins September 24
- Focuses on eye contact, leave it, settle, working dog walk, and more (see below)
- Prerequisite of Family Dog Manners & Obedience or equivalent
- Register your dog for Service Dog Foundations (Only 3 spaces left!)
- More details about our classes
- You will learn: Advanced training skills, including shaping, capturing, reading dog body language, release cues, and targeting, as well as a protocol for responding to strangers when you’re doing public access work
- Your dog will learn: Improved fluency in behaviors such as… go to a mat and relax, eye contact/handler focus, handler-focused leash walking, leave it, wait, and working and training around distractions, including strange people and dogs
Service Dog Foundations is ideal for…
- Dogs being trained to assist their disabled handler as a service dog
- Dogs that have already taken a basic manners class taught with positive methods
- Dogs that can respond to cues in some situations but not around other dogs or people
- Dogs that need increased attention on their handler
Recall Training Tip: Hide & Seek!
A great game to play on a cold, rainy, or snowy day is hide and seek. Put your dog in a sit-stay or down-stay and hide elsewhere in the house. Then call him to come find you. When he does, give him praise, love, and a treat. Then repeat! A great way to train a “stay” and “come.” (If your dog is not yet solid on his stay, have someone else hold him while you hide.)
Recall Training Tip: Bonanza!
If your dog is wild about meal times, use a special emergency-recall cue (such as “BONANZA!” just before you put the food bowl down. Over time, the dog will have a strong emotional response to hearing “BONANZA!” If you ever need to call your dog in an emergency, it could be a life-saver.
Recall Training Tip: Kids Can Train, too!
The “Come Game” is a great family game, including for kids. Give everyone some tasty treats, and call the dog between you. Every time the dog comes, she gets a treat! Start out very close together in a low-distraction area inside your house. Make sure she knows how to do this well before you increase distance or take it outside. If she nips the kids’ fingers when she takes treats, have them drop her treat between their feet.